May 6, 2012

WRITING ADVICE – SL Viehl #3: Memed Again

I stumbled across the writing of Sheila Kelly (aka SL Viehl, Gena Gale, Jessica Hall, Rebecca Kelly and Lynn Viehl) about eleven years ago with the publication of her first novel, STARDOC. I was looking for a the work of a current writer to replace one of my favorite kind of science fiction – human doctors in a space hospital working on aliens. I discovered this genre as an adolescent in Alan E. Nourse’s STAR SURGEON, followed it into James White’s SECTOR GENERAL books and A.M. Lightner’s DOCTOR TO THE GALAXY. S.L. Viehl’s books satisfied that itch – but I learned about a year ago that she is so much more than just a “space hospital” writer! The bits of writing advice in this new ten part series are used with her permission. This one is from:

I am currently hot on the trail of my new novel and thus far, in the past month, I’ve written 18,000 or so words. I know it’s not NaNoWriMo level, but it’s prodigious for me! It’s because the story is about me – as if I’d been transported eighty years into the future following the Information Apocalypse and the Consolidation of Humanity and the Return of the Wild…

But I’ll save that for the book.

In her April 11, 2012 blog entry, she responded to a challenge – I guess they call it “tagging” (as in “Tag, you’re it!” or as in “tagging – using spray paint to create a piece of art or your name on the side of a railroad car” or as in “tagging – adding on to the end of something” or as in “tagging – writing a list of what is in a box and then taping/pasting/sticking it on the box” or as in “tagging – making a price marker and then putting on an object at a garage sale or thrift store” or as in “tagging – putting someone’s name on a photo on FaceBook and then posting it”? I don’t know.)

The challenge here was: “Thea Harrison tagged me, but this one is kinda fun.
Per Thea’s site…Whee, authors are tagging each other to post 7 lines from page 77 of our latest book or current manuscript, starting after the 7th sentence.”

Lynn posted a bit from her upcoming new book, NIGHTBRED by Lynn Viehl (one of her several pseudonyms).

So even though I haven’t been tagged myself, I’m going to do this to the few writer friends I have and see what happens. Here’s the entry from MY current work in progress...only to discover that I haven’t typed in my latest handwritten work yet and it JUST SO HAPPENS to have stopped at page 76. So…after I enter the handwritten work, I’ll be back here to post.

“Noah couldn’t help himself. He said, ‘If it doesn’t matter if Xn died, then why does it matter who killed it?’

“Six pairs of eyes, a lot of tiny tentacles and a pair of tumescent antennae focused on Noah. He noticed that the Shabe’s tail fur was rigid and unmoving in the breeze blowing out of the north. Claws on its tiny arms had become slick with some liquid.

“Tane Giang made sputtering sounds and turned to I Have No Name, saying loudly, ‘Honored Sentient, this absurd Human does not speak for Humanity at all! We all agree…’”

The people I will tag...I guess I thought about this again and I won’t be tagging anyone. If I COULD tag some people, these are the ones I’d do:

Mike Duran
Bruce Bethke
Marc Blake
Gray Reinhart
Mary Robinette Kowal
Becky Jones
Catherin Asaro
David Steffen
Eric James Stone
Ken Scholes
Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Michael Flynn

and maybe a few others.

Maybe I will someday when I have a novel on a shelf somewhere and I have more confidence in my ability to include people I admire for their writing in something fun like this. But for now, it’s fun to imagine.

Plus, any comments on my little seven sentences – or if you’d like to volunteer your seven sentences, place a link to your response in the COMMENTS section, I’ll gather them together and put them into an essay and I’ll get it posted as soon as I can!

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